the birthday boy

I was planning on getting my haircut today, but I figured that I’d go get it tomorrow. The barber I normally go to is located near my mom’s house, and I have to pick up the food for the party that I’m keeping in her fridge. It’ll save me some gas if I do it tomorrow before I visit my mom’s.

I didn’t really do much of anything today. I woke up at 12:30. It felt great not having to go to work today. My bro, my sis, my mom and Mare all wished me a happy birthday. I got a text from my bro then my sis almost immediately after. I got these while checking my email where a message was waiting from my mom. Mare came by after school before work and wished me a happy birthday as well. K$ just texted me wishing me a happy birthday, too. Thanks, guys!

Mare picked up my package from the leasing office. I was hoping that it was my Cable Classic TPB that I won on eBay for half the cover price, but it was the Raphael one-shot that came out in 1985. When I received it, I thought it might have been fake, because the other three one-shots of the other Turtles are much smaller than this one. I verified it through the TMNT official website, so I’m content. It also arrived in excellent condition for being about 23 years old.

I spent the last couple hours being a total computer geek. Lately, I’ve been obsessed with making my sites W3C valid. My choice for achieving this goal has been to validate using XHTML 1.0 Transitional. It’s much more lenient than the others, but it can still be a challenge when a page is pretty code-heavy. I guess you can consider a fun game to play, ’cause it’s hours of entertainment… for me at least. The site I wasted to much time on was my old Swan Dive site that I put together in 2006 after I completed it for 24HCD. The entire site passed validation, and when that happens, I feel like I’ve accomplished something.

I’m going go with the fact that standards and rules are set that have to be followed in order to be validated. This page you’re reading is actually valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional. Yes, I know. It’s all flying over your head… for most of you. I get a kick of it. That’s why I wrote about it.

I was also planning on sketching out the first strip to the comic K$ and I are working on. I did some rough drafts last night, but I would like to complete a final before the weekend is over. I plan on sticking with these series like I’ve stuck to this online journal. If you’re reading this K$, keep on keepin’, bro. I’m really digging the material. We’re gonna make CB solid. The art won’t be great, but it’s all about the strength in numbers.

That’s right. I don’t draw very well. Neither does Jeffrey Brown, but he’s an accomplished cartoonist. All I have to say about drawing, art in general even, is that passion overpowers skill. Everyone will want to be a critic, but you have to know what they’ve accomplished and base the legitimacy of their judgment on what they’ve done. Some critics have cred. Most of them don’t, so can we agree that what they say doesn’t matter? Well, the free publicity is always good no matter what, right?

And to conclude yet another lengthy post from Siggy Wiggy the Birthday Boy, I should be going to Trudy’s tonight around ten to claim my free Mexican martini. This is a must-do tradition for Austinites ages 21 and over. Now that I’m thinking about it, I might get a Cuban martini, because I like those better. Wait. I just changed my mind again. I’m sticking to tradition. Peace out. PARTY!

the ‘za of the week (apr 6 – apr 12)

We missed ‘Za of the Week last week, because we had other dining plans. This week, we kept it simple again. This pie was topped with sliced pepperoni and fresh mushrooms.

To save some space in these posts, I’m going to be fusing the before and after photos into one image. This will also allow you to see a side-by-side comparison of fresh ingredients ready to go into the hot oven and the result after it’s been baked to perfection.

We also warmed up a store-bought loaf of plain focaccia. To add some flavor to it, we brushed our garlic-infused extra virgin olive oil on it and sprinkled an Italian blend of seasoning and some grated parmesan.

The focaccia had a fluffy texture and tasted so good hot out of the oven. I placed the loaf in the oven heated at 450°F right after the pizza finished for about 4½ minutes.

We also had a tasty bag of Parisian salad that we picked up over the weekend. The bag had a mix of green leaf lettuce, frisée, radicchio, and julienne carrots. It also came with salad toppings that added an extra level of flavor. These toppings were: feta cheese, dried cherries, and frosted almonds. We dressed the salad in a raspberry vinaigrette which complimented our baked goods very well.

Lately, we’ve been on a bit of a health kick eating mostly soup and salads. I think ‘Za of the Week will be shifting to a bi-weekly schedule rather than weekly.

the exotic thai

After a trip to Costco, Mare, my mother and I all enjoyed dinner at Exotic Thai. This is our second time to dine at this restaurant, and it was as good as the first time.

Exotic Thai is located on the corner of Braker and Lamar. I want to say that they haven’t been open for any longer than a year and a half. They have an excellent selection of dishes to choose from. The choices include: rice dishes, noodle dishes, vegetable dishes, soups, and curries.

We all ordered hot Jasmine tea, which is very soothing with a unique flavor. They even have the Jasmine leaves floating around in it which gives it a very traditional look.

We started our meal with a hot pot of soup. The soup came in a neat-looking bowl that had a cylinder going through it with one of those rocks that they set on fire so a blue flame was coming through the top. The soup had chicken, shrimp, straw mushrooms, onions, green onions, celery, basil, and bean threads in a tasty broth.

I had the same dish to eat as I did the first time. I can’t remember the name, but it was a curry dish. It was made with red curry and coconut milk. I chose chicken, and it also had bamboo shoots, basil leaves, and onions. They serve many of their dishes with a plate of white rice to make sure you’re full even though the portions will fill you up themselves.

For dessert, we had the same thing we had the last time: fried ice cream. I’ve never had fried ice cream that tasted this good. Basically, it’s a scoop of vanilla ice cream inside a piece of bread with sesame seeds sprinkled on top that’s been fried. It tastes like a donut à la mode.

I recommend this place to anyone looking for traditional Thai cuisine. Their dishes are medium-priced and well worth every penny.

Mare and I are biased to make Thai Noodle House on the Drag our favorite Thai place, but this is definitely the next best Thai place in town.

the x-men vs. iron man

I’m looking forward to the new Iron Man movie coming out in less than a month. Here’s some art that was discovered at work. Brilliant I say.

I’m keeping this one short and sweet, because it’s my early bedtime. I’m pulling the 9 to 5 tomorrow. I don’t have much to update on, except Mare made an amazing soup with chicken, mushrooms, and bacon.

Two more days to go until the weekend returns. As usual, I am looking forward to it.

the wall of flame

K-Money succeeds at making the Wall of Flame at Pluckers on Research in Austin, Texas.

The group cheers him on as he consumes Fire in the Hole wing #25. Gunner is to his right with an iPhone capturing the moment as well. Neil is on his left very entertained.

Notice at 12 seconds in when K-Money raises his eyebrows signaling that victory was achieved. He must have been thinking, “No challenge.” We all agree the challenge will return when the poo flame cometh.

the 3hirty (aka the april post challenge)

Similar to what I did in February, I am challenging myself to do the same for the month of April. Will this be a bimonthly challenge? I don’t know but by the looks of it, quite possibly.

I have another post that I will be writing tonight, and this will be the April kick-off post.

What’s going on this month?

I turn another year not this Friday but next.

Uncle Sam & friends get to keep the piece of what they borrowed from my paycheck and hopefully I’ll get some of it back. These past few years haven’t been too nice to me in regards to tax returns.

My mother’s birthday is this month. To be exact, it’s on Earth Day.

That same day, Sleepercar’s debut album, West Texas, will officially be released. I’ve gotten the chance to listen to it already, and I enjoy it. I hope they return to Austin soon, because I will definitely attend.

The following day, Thrice will be rocking out Stubb’s. I’m excited about this show. I really hope that they play To Awake and Avenge the Dead, but that may be unlikely with the direction they’ve taken their music. I can hope though, right?

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Thrice: If you somehow found yourself reading this, please play To Awake and Avenge the Dead at your Austin show in April. We miss that song, and we were disappointed when you didn’t play it at your last show. NOFX played The Decline in its entirety, and I never thought I’d get to witness that live. Is playing one of your most loved songs by some of your most loyal fans too hard to fulfill?

I know you have to promote The Alchemy Index, but To Awake… doesn’t even clock in at three minutes so I’m sure it’ll leave plenty of space to play all those songs. I probably sound like I’m begging at this point (which I am ’cause I’m on my knees typing this… j/k), but I’m sure Ian would lose more faith in you if you don’t play that song.

Ian, High Priest of the Church of Ianism, represents the status quo of your fanbase. He’s loved you guys since The Illusion of Safety and has attended every show you’ve played in Austin since. So have I, and this is our only request: Please play To Awake and Avenge the Dead at the Austin show. I know you guys listen to your fans ’cause you guys aren’t some artificial formation cooked up in a major label’s lab.

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OK… enough of that. I think those are the main highlights of April. Well, today is technically April Fool’s Day. I’m sure my workmates, who can be very dimwitted at times, are going to want to play an office prank or two on me or each other at work later today. They actually tried to pull the ol’ “keep the optical mouse from functioning correctly” prank, and I debunked that sucker in less than two seconds. WEAK!

Lesser highlights this month will include my two visits to Pluckers, one of which is tomorrow. Their food is delicious, and with Tuesday being fifty-cent wing night and two-dollar Shiners, my experience is improved that much more. K$ is claiming to get on the Wall of Flame eventually and had mentioned that he was going to conquer some Fire in the Hole wings tomorrow. I’m not sure if he remembered, but we’ll see.

This is the kick-off post for the April Post Challenge. Wish me luck. Peace out.

the ‘za of the week (mar 23 – mar 29)

I think we’ve made tonight’s ‘Za of the Week before. This one had pepperoni, pineapple, and red onion on top of sun-dried tomato pesto with mozzarella cheese. The combination makes a pie packed with bold flavor.

za

I’m trying to utilize more of the photo space when taking the before and after pics.

za

This after photo was shot in a different lighting than the before photo. The first pic was taken in the kitchen where the ‘Za of the Week photos are usually taken, but the lighting was acting up when it was time to take the after photo which ended up being taken in the dining area.